The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) on Tuesday said it has established the Directorate of Migration and upgraded its Public Relations Unit to a full-fledged department for enhanced service delivery.
Comptroller-General of Immigration, Isah Jere Idris, made the disclosure at a workshop on ‘Communication Strategy for Fight against Irregular Immigration’.
The workshop, funded by Konrad Adenauer Foundation (KAS) was organized to improve the skills of public relations officers, towards upscaling their capability in addressing the menace of irregular migration, particularly migrants’ smuggling.
He said the act domesticated relevant aspects of the Palermo Protocol that seek to suppress this ugly phenomenon, and further equip the Service with relevant legal provisions to criminalize SOM.
“With this development, the Service is now empowered to deepen its efforts at encouraging humane, orderly and safe migration but also deal decisively with migrant smugglers anywhere they are caught in the country.
“The Act emphatically empowers the Public Relation Department to continually partner with relevant internal and external partners to use the media and CSOs in sensitizing the citizenry against this social vice.
“We have continued to emplace viable social mobilization tools in the form of advocacy and enlightenment campaign in this direction,” the Immigration boss said.
Also speaking at the occasion, spokesperson of NIS, Amos Okpu, said with the recent upgrade of its PR Unit to a full-fledged Department, several professionalized sections have been created and to be staffed with personnel with requisite skills and competence.
“While the Department now has a social media strategy document, approval has been secured to regulate staff deployment to all Public Relations’ assignments in the Service. Henceforth, deployments to such assignment will be based on competence, demonstrable competence and professionalism,” Okpu said.
Other speakers at the occasion included, Mall. Yushau A. Shuaib of Dr. Peter Afunaya of the Department of State Service (DSS), Arinze Mbanefo of NAPTIP, Dr. Jake Dan-Azumi of NILDS and Maria Peran of Konrad.